KCEO: Teambuilding, Sales, and Communication

WorkUp: Burger Building

Betsy Bonnema, Jayme Szublewski
Our students had a practice run at their "Three Meet in the Morning" burger at WorkUp.  They will be showcasing all they've learned in CEO at The Third Annual Taste of WorkUp event next Thursday, September 28th from 5-7pm at WorkUp on the beautiful MinnWest Campus.  Come and enjoy free music, burgers, beverages, and desserts!  Don't forget to vote for the best burger!

Prairie Woods Environmental Learning Center

Our students met on the gorgeous grounds of PWELC to work on teambuilding, communication, and trust.  Not even the mosquitos could damper the mood of this group.  Everyone was supportive and positive if a little goofy.  It was a great morning.

Chamber Connection: United Way

Willmar Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce
Mr. Gehrking has a few moments that he sadistically enjoys and one of them is the first CEO Chamber Connections visit.  He doesn't explain how the Friday morning networking event works so students show up expecting a normal tour or speaker.  Initially the students are excited to see food and casual conversation, but as soon as the room quiets and they realize everyone will be speaking in front of the group...the excitement turns to fear.  The pain ends quickly and the students realize that they are not the only nervous public speakers in the room.

Prinsco & Duininck Inc.

Jason Duininck
On Tuesday our students traveled to Prinsburg to learn about Duininck Inc. and Prinsco.  Jason Duininck described how the third generation business has grown through diversification and new technology.  This was the first of many 'safety vest' tours we have and Mr. Gehrking enjoyed watching all of his students don their blaze orange outfits.  Thank you Jason and the Prinsco staff for making us feel welcome!

Harvey Anderson Funeral Home

Nathan Streed
On Friday our students were welcomed to Harvey Anderson Funeral home of Willmar by CEO Nathan Streed.  Streed explains that his business strives to do everything the right way every time.  The funeral service has changed dramatically over the past decade with cremation becoming 60% of his business.  Harvey Anderson is one of the few funeral homes that actually has its own crematory.  Our students are beginning to see how business has a hand in every aspect of their lives.  Thank you Nathan for opening their eyes!

Taste of WorkUp


You’re invited to join us next Thursday, Sept. 28th from 5-7pm for a Taste of WORKUP. It’s a yearly celebration to support and showcase our community’s entrepreneurs. The event includes a unique selection of burgers, bars, and beverages all hand-made by local entrepreneurs to reflect their businesses. Our students will be serving up samples of their “3 Meet in the Morning Burger” along with build-your-own ice cream sundaes. We of course had to do some taste testing in class before the recipes were solidified!

 There will also be live music, an interactive art project, and voting for your favorite food & drink! Find out more at and we hope you can join us!

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The manner in which the CEO program is funded is critical to its success and sustainability. All funds raised are used exclusively for the Kandiyohi CEO program. To participate, a 3-year $1000 per year commitment is required. Business Partner Investors commitments of time and energy are also critical to the program's success. Contributions may be tax deductible, as our organization is a 501(c)(3) not for profit organization.

When we are not touring local businesses, we need a place to host the class. During that time, the 17 CEO students and their Facilitator would meet at your site where they would also have guest speakers and guests from the community attend. Hosting requires a facility with internet access and adequately accommodates up to 22 people.

We are looking for people to share real-life stories about the concepts of running a business, from strategic thinking, product development to marketing, and cash flow management. Also, sharing your personal successes and failures are what recent classes have enjoyed the most.

If you are interested in participating in any of the above programs, use our contact form to send us a message

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